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Showing blog posts by Mike Hall

Mike Hall

I’m a former West Virginia newspaper reporter, staff writer for the United Mine Workers Journal and managing editor of the Seafarers Log. I came to the AFL- CIO in 1989 and have written for several federation publications, focusing on legislation and politics, especially grassroots mobilization and workplace safety. When my collar was still blue, I carried union cards from the Oil, Chemical and Atomic Workers, American Flint Glass Workers and Teamsters for jobs in a chemical plant, a mining equipment manufacturing plant and a warehouse. I’ve also worked as roadie for a small-time country-rock band, sold my blood plasma and played an occasional game of poker to help pay the rent. You may have seen me at one of several hundred Grateful Dead shows. I was the one with longhair and the tie-dye. Still have the shirts, lost the hair.

What Are Republicans After for Social Security? Cuts

AFGE photo via Flickr

We told you how Republican House members last week went after Social Security on their very first day at work. Some 11 million people who receive Social Security disability benefits could see their benefits cut by 20% in 2016 and cuts to Social Security retirement benefits for everyone could also be in store. Here’s what some other folks have to say about that and other attacks Republicans may launch against Social Security.

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Van Hollen Offers Battle Plan to Combat Income Inequality

Van Hollen Offers Battle Plan to Combat Income Inequality

Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) unveiled a new plan today to address the large and growing problem of income inequality that he says, “attacks the chronic problem of stagnant middle-class incomes from both directions: it promotes bigger paychecks and lets workers keep more of what they earn.”

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Workplace, Public Safety Threatened by Republican Regulatory Bill

The bill establishes new roadblocks for mine and workplace safety, public health and other new  regulations.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) would have been prevented from issuing timely guidelines on protecting health care workers and first responders from the Ebola virus and how to control the spread of the deadly virus to the public under a Republican bill the House is set to vote on this week.

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Overtime Pay Rule Needs ‘Bold’ Action, says Trumka

President Barack Obama needs to “go bold” with the upcoming revision of overtime pay rules expected shortly from the Department of Labor, says AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka. In the video above, he says:

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With 252,000 New Jobs, December Unemployment Drops to 5.6%

With 252,000 New Jobs, December Unemployment Drops to 5.6%

The economy added 252,000 jobs in December and the unemployment rate dropped to 5.6% from November’s 5.8%, according to figures released this morning by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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Republican House Bill Cuts Workers' Health Care Coverage

Republican House Bill Cuts Workers' Health Care Coverage

Some 1 million workers could lose their employer-provided health insurance under a Republican bill (H.R. 30) passed by the House (252-172, with 12 Democrats crossing the aisle.) today. On top of stripping health care coverage from those workers, the bill also would add some $53.2 billion to the federal deficit over the next decade, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

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First Target for House Republicans? Cutting Social Security

NCPSSM photo

On the very first day that the new larger House Republican majority got to work, it made a move that could mean some 11 million people who receive Social Security disability benefits will see their lifeline benefits cut by 20% in 2016—or even cuts to Social Security retirement benefits for everyone.

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AFL-CIO Urges Obama to Promote Human Rights and Equitable Development on Both Sides of the Border

Image via Google search, labled for reuse.

President Barack Obama hosted President Enrique Peña Nieto of Mexico in Washington, D.C., today and, as emphasized in a letter sent by AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka, the global trade union movement is deeply concerned by the human rights crisis in Mexico, which harms working people on both sides of the border.

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FairPoint Talks Underway with Federal Mediator

Photo via Fairness at FairPoint's Facebook page.

Negotiators for the nearly 2,000 members of the Electrical Workers (IBEW) and Communications Workers of America (CWA) who have been on strike against FairPoint Communications since Oct. 17 and company representatives are back at the bargaining table with federal mediators this week.

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USPS Delivery, Service Cutbacks ‘an Outrage’

AFGE photo via Flickr Creative Commons

The U.S. Postal Service reduced delivery standards today and began a process that will slow first-class mail delivery. As The Nation’s John Nichols writes, the service cutbacks come on the heels of record-breaking and successful holiday deliveries of 15.5 billion packages, letters and parcels by postal workers, letter carriers, mail handlers and rural carriers in weeks of “intense demanding, long-hours, late-night and weekend work.”

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